21 random facts about me

11351327_1003802446304578_2977861388820677101_nThis post is written in response to a prompt on Friday Reflections on  Write Tribe


I thought I’d choose this topic for Friday reflections and just finish it in a jiffy. After all it is just 21 random facts about yourself right? How hard is that to write? But as I started writing, I realised that while I could find enough facts to pen down, how many did I really want to share with the world? And so I guess that becomes my first fact. And since it does say random, forgive me if I jump from one area of my life to the other and back with no link or connection what so ever.

  1. I don’t like to share my innermost feelings or thoughts with any one. There is always that one wall behind which I hide.
  2. I have twin daughters. I would have loved to have a couple more but was too mindful of the ever growing population of the world.
  3. I talk to all animals, even the spiders and lizards in my house. I even name them!
  4. The only animals I kill are mosquitoes.
  5. I can spend the whole day in bed with a good book and then wonder how it has suddenly become dark.
  6. I love to be alone at home. If I could, I’d never leave the house. And that scares me so much that I force myself to get out.
  7. I hate to cook dal chaval. But I love to bake.
  8. Old Bollywood songs over modern music any day.
  9. A jar of Nutella lasts for one sitting. So I get a separate jar for my daughter and we label our respective jars.
  10. I have trained myself to go alone for movies, or for a beer and a meal. And I feel great about it!
  11. When I was young, Dad used to take me with him to watch English war movies and action thrillers since mom hated going to the theatre. I still prefer those movies over romance or comedy.
  12. I fell in love at the age of 11, with Rishi Kapoor when I went to see Bobby.
  13. I still read Enid Blyton books. Though I also read Nora Robert and Jim Butcher. (I love the Dresden Files)Book-Cover-1
  14. My first book, “Who Shall I be today?” was published this year in March. It is a book of poems and got some pretty good reviews.
  15. I have a huge pink Teddy bear named Fred whom I bought as a birthday gift for myself on my 50th birthday.
  16. I eat ice cream as I walk down the road.
  17. I hate wearing formal clothes though I envy the people who can carry them off.
  18. I love dancing and I just need to hear the music to get itchy feet.
  19. I prefer Prof. Bhaer over Mr. Darcy. But if I had to describe the kind of man I am still waiting for, he would have to be able to dance, feed me awesome food and love to read.IMG-20140706-WA0002
  20. The reason I get out of bed nowadays, is my crazy dog, Muffin. She came into my life two years ago, as a puppy who needed to be rescued from the gutter she had fallen in. Today, I can’t imagine a life without her.
  21. I am writing my first novel. And I just hope I don’t tire of it half way through!

So , I guess that’s it. What about you? What would you like to share about yourself?


When Poetry Heals

Six years! I can hardly believe it’s been six years since that fateful day. The doctor’s face is a blur. I just remember he had a beard. The clock was huge with a yellow and gold rim; the numbers large and the time was two forty a.m.. Of course that was not the time on the death certificate. But that was the time I knew my husband had gone. And as if it was because I could not cry, the heavens did it for me. It just poured. Suddenly and swiftly.

Healing after the death of a loved one is difficult and at times it seems almost impossible. Sometimes it seems that for every step you take forward, you slide two steps backward. There are days when you don’t want to live at all. You wish you were dead too. And then suddenly one day, you forget to be sad for a few minutes. Maybe you smile at that little baby who is looking at you. Or you just enjoy the wind on your face. And then you actually get up one morning in a good mood, ready to face the day. It doesn’t matter that the next whole week you are miserable. You have these sporadic days of happiness thrown in among the misery. And before you know it you start picking up the threads of your life again.

And sometimes, there are angels to help you heal: Family, friends; in  unexpected ways.  I have found healing in the poetry of my friends and there is one poem that I must share with you. This is a poem written by my dear friend, Jayesh Ramaiya. He and his wife Kalpana write absolutely awesome poems.  This particular one is my favourite and for some reason when I read it today, it soothed my soul .

कारवाँ के साथ कुछ गुब्बारे जुड़ जाते है

बदलती हर राह पर वे साथ ही मूड जाते है

खुश मिजाज है वे अपनी ही धून में चलते है

गांठ मत ढीली करना वह शोख कंही उड़ जाते है
कारवाँ के साथ कुछ गुब्बारे जुड़ जाते है


यादों के खंजर सीने में चुभते है

साथ बिताये हुवे पल आँसुओंमे भीगते है

जहाँ जा रहें है वे साथ ले जाते नहीं

चाहे जितना बुलाओ लौटकर आते नहीं
कारवाँ के साथ कुछ गुब्बारे जुड़ जाते है


अगले पड़ाव पर नये गुब्बारे मिल जायेंगे

फिर नये नये रंग हम सबको लुभायेंगे

जुड़ जायेगी नये मोतियों की लड़ियाँ

फिर नये शायराना गीत हम गाते है
कारवाँ के साथ कुछ गुब्बारे जुड़ जाते है


अब साथ रहेने की कसमें जाग जाती है

क्षितिज में एक तसबीर उभर आती है

फिर दूर कोई गुब्बारा नज़र आता है

और नये रास्ते हमे बुलाते है
कारवाँ के साथ कुछ गुब्बारे जुड़ जाते है

– जयकल्प –



No Books!


This post is written in response to a prompt on Friday Reflections on  Write Tribe

The prompt was “A room without books is like a body without a soul.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero

No Books!?!

“Get up”  My mother in law shook me awake. It was the day after my wedding. I sat up sleepily and looked around the tiny room that was now my home.  Somehow my mother in law had made space for all seventeen of us (My  brother in law and his wife, my sisters in law and their husbands and all their kids and of course hubby, ma in law and me!).

“Go and have a bath and get ready before anybody else gets up,” she said. “And wear something nice. You are a new bride!”

“Yes” I thought to myself with a shake of my head as I bathed in the minuscule bathroom that had just a curtain to screen it from the kitchen. “A new bride who spend her first night sleeping between her husband and mother in law”.

This was not how I had imagined my wedding night at all. I suppose I had all the Bollywood  movie images of flower decked beds and total privacy, certainly not crammed in a room with fifteen other people.  But I really didn’t mind as this was the family I had chosen for my own and in any case we were off for our honey moon in a couple of days once all the traditional visiting back and forth was over.

Soon everyone was awake, and the work got distributed. Some of my sisters in law saw to the lunch preparations while others looked after the kids. The men generally sat around reading the paper or watching TV or drinking beer. (After all it was a wedding)

When I asked to be given some work to do, ma in law said, “Just relax today. You have your whole life to work. This is one day, when you are allowed not to work in your sasural. Take full advantage of it.”

‘Not bad!”  I thought and looked around for hubby. But he was in the midst of a very vociferous argument with his brothers. So I looked around for my first love, books. And my heart broke! There were no books to be found anywhere! Not a single book in that house!

Suddenly that room which till now had seemed so warm and full of love, turned stifling! Why, oh why, had I not thought of packing some books in the overnight case I had sent on earlier that week!  Thank God we had to go to my parent’s house for dinner that night. It meant I could pick up some books and get them back with me. But what was I to do till then?

Hubby must have sensed something because he came over and asked, “What’s wrong?”

“There are no books! I need to go out now and buy some books!”

Before he could answer, my eldest sister in law replied, “Don’t be silly. You can’t go out of the house by yourself like that! You are a new bride!”

I looked at hubby in despair, but he just turned and walked away.

I sat back in my chair, feeling really miserable. The size of the house had not got me down, neither had the fact that I had to spend my wedding night amidst the entire clan.  No I was able to deal with all of that. But this, this was something I couldn’t imagine.  I couldn’t remember a time without books. I read a book a day at times.  I had laughed through them, cried through them, fallen in love with both the heroes and heroines and started writing because of them.  Books for me were as essential as breathing! And here I was, stuck in a house with not a single book!

Suddenly a bundle was thrust into my lap. “My wedding gift to you!”  whispered hubby  and I saw a dozen books by all my favourite authors.  He had managed to slip out to buy me my beloved books ! Not caring who was watching I flung my arms around him and hugged him as tightly as I could. I had never loved him more than at that moment!